We’ve always loved our streaming platforms, but since lockdown, our need for on-demand services has become so much more apparent: we have become a “subscription society”.
Subscription retail services in the UK have experienced a massive boom during the coronavirus pandemic, rising 39.4% during July alone.
With cyclical payments scheduled for our groceries, entertainment, fitness and almost everything else, while the amounts may be minimal individually, they soon add up, and can be detrimental to your savings goals.
According to a new study from Barclaycard, the average Brit spends a staggering £552 a year on entertainment, food, grooming and fashion subscriptions.
What’s costlier (both literally and emotionally) is the 40% of us who forget to cancel a free trial to a subscription service, only realising when you get the bank notification that you've paid £19.99 for an AI powered palm reading app.
So, how can we be more mindful when it comes to subscription hygiene?
Immediately after reading these statistics, I took inventory of my own direct debits/app store subscriptions (excluding essentials like gas, electricity, phone bill, etc).
On a monthly basis, I found I was routinely spending money on:
Totalling £59.93 p/m (£719.16 p/a).
I encourage you to take a few minutes to scale your bank statements, or the subscriptions tab in your app store to identify any redundant services or app subscriptions.
If you live in a shared house, or with a partner, perhaps divide and conquer streaming services so you're not doubling up.
Recipe boxes, like HelloFresh, may work out to be more cost effective if you’re constantly raiding the pre-made supermarket aisles. Ps: they often have introductory promotions, so keep an eye out.
Still in the realm of food delivery, Deliveroo charges £7.99 per month for free delivery, which you will earn back within two to three orders if you’re the takeout type.
For the daily caffeine fiends, Pret has just launched their new coffee subscription at £20 per month.
Another popular expenditure are our beloved online fashion retailers, like Asos, who offer premium memberships for regular shoppers, promoting 12 months free next day delivery for an upfront price of £9.95, paying for itself in just two orders.
We’re all suckers for a 14 day free trial… until we forget we signed up and are charged.
Easy fix: set phone reminders for the day before they're due to take the money out to avoid getting taken by surprise.
At the end of the day, the only app you should be forgetting about is us while we do all the saving for you.
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